Saving water inside the home

An average tap flows at a rate of up to 20 litres per minute, depending on how far it’s turned on. If we apply this to how we use water in different rooms in the house, the figures are surprising.

Follow these simple tips and learn how to avoid wasting water without greatly affecting your lifestyle.

Check for leaks

  • Use your water meter to check for leaks. Turn off all taps before you go to bed one night and take a meter reading. Check the meter the next morning before any water is used. If the meter reading has advanced and no-one has used any water during the night you may have a leaking pipe, tap or toilet cistern. Locate the problem and repair it.
  • A continuously dripping tap can waste 600 litres of water per day. Turn taps off properly and check washers for wear.
  • A continuously running toilet can waste more than 200 kilolitres of water per year. To check for leaks, put a little food colouring in the tank. If, without flushing, the colouring begins to appear in the bowl, the cistern should be repaired immediately.

In the bathroom

  • Install a dual flush toilet. Modern toilets give the option to flush either half or all the cistern’s water.
  • Take shorter showers. Limit showers to the time it take to soap up, wash down and rinse off.
  • Install a water-saving shower rose or flow restrictor. Many showers put out 20 litres of water per minute, however, 10 litres is enough for a refreshing, cleansing shower.
  • There is no need to run water down the plug hole while brushing your teeth. Wet your brush and fill a glass for rinsing.
  • Don’t rinse your razor under a running tap. Fill the sink with a little water for rinsing.

In the laundry  

  • Each washing machine or dishwasher load costs you nearly $1.00 in water, energy, detergent and machine wear costs. So fill up before you wash.

In the kitchen

  • When washing dishes by hand, don’t rinse them under a running tap. If you have two sinks, fill the second one with rinsing water. If you have only one sink, stack washed dishes in a dish rack and rinse them with a pan of hot water.
  • Wait until you have a full load before using your dishwasher.
  • Keep a bottle of drinking water in the refrigerator. This avoids wasting water while waiting for the water to cool down, that way you will have cool refreshing water whenever you want it.
  • Install aerating taps. These are inexpensive and can reduce water flow by 50%.
  • When buying a new appliance that uses water, be sure it has a high water conservation rating

We can reduce community demand for this precious resource if we all use water more carefully and wisely.